Hiking in Picos de Europa

Community Highlights Europe Hiking in Picos de Europa

There are so many photos to share I feel like this will end up being one of those dreaded family slide shows from the past. What is the equivalent of that today? Oh, a blog? Well this is embarrassing!

Moving right along. We went on a hiking trip to Picos de Europa and followed it up with a bit of biking in Asturias. This area of Spain looks so different from where we live, I think I got a little camera happy. I hope you enjoy the pictures.

I am no longer allowed to plan hikes independently. I have no one to blame but myself and some days I just really wanted to ask why in the world anyone would plan such a long hike. As usual, the scenery was beautiful and fun was had by all, but man was I tired!

Day 1 we drove after work for about 6 hours and had an overnight pit stop in a little town along the way called Villar de Plasencia and caught a beautiful sunset. Spain has some of the best sunsets anywhere. In the morning we had another 6 hour drive with a lunch pit stop which I picked randomly off the map and turned out to be a beautiful canal just off the highway. We arrived at our BnB and scurried up the closest "hill" to check out the scenery.


Our inn for 4 nights in Las Arenas and a nearby honey shop. These two little guys stood in front of this door for two hours despite having free reign of the field. I guess they were hungry?


For our first full hiking day, the weather didn't look like it would hold out so we made a game day decision and did a shorter hike called La Molina. I am superstitious/obsessed with water mills and always try to check out any hikes, restaurants, inns or whatever that have Mill in the title so we set off and it did not disappoint.


The next day we did the most famous hike in the region "Ruta del Cares." This hike is famous for its canyon, views, and steep drop offs. No biggie that it was still kind of wet. We used our hiking sticks for the first time on this trip and I am a fan. It was also filled with goats with whom we had to share the trail.


Lucky for us, at the turn around point of the hike, there was a little town and we got to enjoy lunch rather than eat our dried snacks we brought along. Nothing like a hot bowl of bean soup after a long walk.


This isn't actually the soup from the hike, but I love bean soup and ate it more than once on this trip.

The next day we walked from Poncebos to Bulnes to Sotres. You can take a funicular (an elevator type cable car thing) to Bulnes but we decided to walk it. There were a ton of switchbacks and it was definitely worth the walk up. Bulnes is a little town where people live/stay/have coffee and it is super cute. Up until 20 years ago, it was only accessible on foot. The hike beyond it lead up to a valley with lots of horses, donkeys and cows. We also spent most of the day with on and off rain and climbed up a mud river.


I had planned this trip to include a walk up to Uriellu, but by this day I was so freaking tired and did not feel like I could make the push. So I said, we would just hike for an hour or so and turn around. This turned into "just one more river bend" and before I knew it, we made it to the refuge at the base of Uriellu. It ended up being a 7 or 8 hour day of hiking. WHY do I do this to myself?


After 5 days of hiking we said goodbye to Picos de Europa and we spent a day along the coast checking out different towns/scenic spots/cliff.


Our coastal travels culminated in Ribadesella. For some reason, it was just one of those days where we didn't take a lot of photos. I guess I liked this church though.

It felt like we needed one more thing to fill the day, and we happened along a whimsical little trail paralleling a creek. Its not every day one takes a walk through a haunted forest.


Our next little town, Espinaréu was so adorable. We stayed in a little house that had been renovated and was so freaking cute. All through town are very unique grain storage buildings that really identify the area.


So started the portion of the trip dedicated to cycling. We kicked it off with a Bike ride to a series of mountain lake. This was a wonderful way to access the lakes, as a great portion of the ride is restricted only to buses and private tours. Its a good thing because it was a considerable climb, with some steep gradients. It was well worth any effort, and we were greeted by many sheep, cows and vultures to add to the experience, not to mention a dog that could be mistaken for a sheep.


A few more of our biking days included a ride heading out of Oviedo through the countryside and dropped us back into down past a really cool old trainstation...


and a ride to a waterfall that we never found, though I gave it a devoted effort to find it, including taking off my socks and shoes and hiking a river.


In the middle of our time in Asturias, we also made our way to Gijon. As some of you have heard us say, Spain is always a party. Our wanderings landed us in a square booming with live music and pubs with ample drink offerings.


And so ends our trip to the Picos. It now holds a special place in my heart as the place I loved so much that I hiked too far every single day.

This featured blog entry was written by trackers from the blog ¡Global Nada!.
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Posted Sun, Dec 03, 2023 | Spain | Comments